The Subsea Power Cable and Umbilical Giga Factory

The Norwegian owned company UNITECH Offshore is investing millions on the West Coast.

Published: 9 July 2018
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UNITECH Offshore is challenging the biggest suppliers within high voltage power cables and umbilicals with groundbreaking production technology.

– A positive deviance for the market, says founder, inventor, and COB Bernt Hellesøe. – For a long time we have been working with new product design and manufacturing technology that solves well-known problems in industry and the market.

UNITECH’s “Giga Factory” is a floating production line that will be located at Rubbestadneset (Bømlo, Norway) near the new UNITECH Research & Technology Center that is currently under construction. The production technology is partly patented and patent pending, and the “Giga Factory” has been featured in the June edition of a Norwegian technology magazine, Teknisk Ukeblad. Floating cable tanks allow continuous production of over 4000 tons of cable and can be floated onto modified offshore vessels for rapid mobilization and installation.

– The optimal time for realizing our plans is right now says Gunnar Birkeland, in charge of this business development. – We continue to experience a strong, increasing demand for UNITECH design and quality, while strategic business partners can now contribute significantly to a highly effective supply chain.

For over 30 years UNITECH has designed and produced umbilicals and connectors for the Oil & Gas market, but for most companies UNITECH has been working “under the radar.” Even in the middle of a region known for its subsea expertise, it is not well-known that UNITECH Offshore has produced and delivered umbilicals with terminations to the entire world from Stord, Norway.

Umbilical technology is relatively young, but with a great number of installations that are now about 15 years old. Many of these installations were not sufficiently robust in their design, and must now be replaced or risk the disruption of oil & gas production. Due to a stable oil price, an increasing number of new fields are under construction. In addition, there is a greatly increased need for electrification of marine operations within Oil & Gas, offshore wind and aquaculture.

UNITECH will establish the company UNITECH Umbilicals & Cables AS to solidify and cultivate its core business to a major business development undertaking. The company establishes new production lines such as a new extrusion line for power conductors and a “Giga” production facility for "endless" long cables, and an exhaustive range of types and sizes of umbillicals. In addition, UNITECH has rebuilt existing production lines for a wider range of special products. As before, cables and umbillicals are delivered as “turnkey” solutions complete with UNITECH connectors, terminations, and auxiliary equipment.

NORCABLE launches a metallurgic production line for conductors at Karmøy and becomes an important supplier of the world's cleanest aluminum that can replace traditional copper. Aluminum is cheaper, stronger and can be delivered in near endless lengths directly to UNITECH's production lines.

– We are very pleased with the major investment in Hordaland and Haugaland, and we are proud to be a unifying partner for the world's best expertise in umbillicals, cables and offshore operations conveniently positioned in our region, says Gunnar Birkeland, who is looking forward to moving into the 24/7 office building in Haugesund.

UNITECH Offshore

The Giga Factory is part of a UNITECH strategic business development programme, several years in the planning.

Other major elements of the programme include The UNITECH Research & Technology Center and Timber Bay.